The Saga Continues, Proof That Koscielny Was The Perpetrator, Jewish Holy Day Does Us Favour & Will Smith Talks To Owen Coyle…
Morning all. On a day where once again Mrs X and I go north, trying to find that elusive house to move into (I`ve got the look on a nice little one by the sea, next door to a pub, three mins to the motorway to get to T`Reebok quicker), it seems that no one is giving up on what is/is not a sending off and whether the other tackle is/is not a hanging office. So I say screw them. If that`s the way they want to play, I`ll keep on talking about it until they stop.
The main provider of this yesterday was actually our own manager. Speaking in his press conference for the Villa game, of which more below, he has said that the FA should look at overhauling the appeal system in light of Gary “Gaz” Cahill`s appeal being turned down. He has based this on a meeting with Mike Lowery, the jug eared black cop from Bad Boys, played by Will Smith, who told him that he also felt it was a yellow card and that he would pop a cap in the ass of those that disagreed.
No, hang on. Not Lowery. Riley. Mike Riley, the small ginger fellow who used to be a referee. The Mike Riley who sent off six Bolton players during our time in the Premier League, including Holdsworth and Warhurst on that day in 2001 when all they did was look at Robbie Savage (no, the other one) and he fell over, breaking his hair in the process. He probably said that to St Owen and then went skipping down the hall going “la la la la la”. He looks the sort.
Anyway, after being taken in by the small ginger person, Coyle said:
“The difficulty with the appeals is the criteria laid down for the panel reviewing the red cards. Some of the text says it needs to be a clear and obvious mistake by the referee; if it’s a yellow card it’s not clear and obvious because it’s just an interpretation. Maybe the criteria needs to be looked at.””
I can understand Owen thinking this. He is, after all, now having to rely on AOB to shore up the defence until Cahill serves his ban. The problem is that if you ask the FA to look at this then you open up a can of worms on other tackles, which leads us back to Paul Robinson and that is never a nice place to be. Apologies if I`ve plagarised this from somewhere else, it wouldn`t be the first time, but if Robinson had smacked Diaby in the face and the ref hadn`t seen it, he would have been straight up before the beak with more than a three game ban coming to him. However, as Attwell didn`t see what, in law, can be construed as an assault but in football is just an iffy tackle, he gets off to play again, unfortunately, on Saturday.
If you apply the managers logic to looking at tackles that don`t warrant a red card, and let`s be clear Cahill`s did, then you have to apply it to all tackles in retrospect, leaving clubs like Bolton with a reputation, however true, of over the top play, swinging in the wind.
Others will point to the bigger clubs and say “well now we will get to see their over the top tackles”, to which I say good. That won`t stop our players getting into trouble for being over physical and somewhere down the line we may be left with only Ricky Gardner and a couple of the youth team. This will still be three more than Blackburn mind.
The rules are there to be interpreted by referees and there will always be a discrepancy over the way they regard things. You can bring in goal line technology but you can’t bring in technology to decide whether tackles like Cahill’s was a sending off. Asking the FA and their like to interpret something different to how their referees see it is just removing a level of authority that referees have and once you do that you may not be able to stop.
Referees interpret, hat is the way that football always has been and always will be. It is true that Attwell had a shocker on Saturday but better referees than him may have interpreted the Cahill tackle the same way. And anyway, if Mike Riley told me it was daytime, I`d be getting my Horlicks ready.
Hold up, as Ray Winstone says just as the current odds appear, it seems that we still haven`t reached the end of it. It turns out that Mr Vinegar had a go at Bolton in his programme notes for Wednesday`s match in some European competition that doesn`t really concern us. The Robinson tackle came up, naturally, as well as SuperKev`s “flying leap” and his “welcome to the Premier League” tackle on Little Jack. Our manager has taken natural umbrage to this
“I sent Arsène a text after the game to apologise for missing him as we had to catch a train back north. He sent me back a text saying we were a very good team.”
Of course he did. Now, it may seem like I`m labouring a point here about the Robinson tackle, but, as I said, seeing as how everyone else is why stop now?
On Goals on Sunday, sitting next to Richard Gough, when the Robinson tackle was played St Owen said it was the first time he had seen it. Now I`m no detective, but if we were catching a train back north, just what was he doing back in a studio near Heathrow the next morning? And if that was the first time he had seen it, what makes him think that Mr Vinegar had seen it before he sent the text? These are questions that need to be asked and answered.
Mr Vinegar has the right to say what he says in his own programme notes, but he wrote it in a programme that was preaching to the converted anyway, so what does it matter? There are some Arsenal fans who just don`t like the opposition. Mr Vinegar could have written that Kevin Davies cures sick children with his voice and some Arsenal fans would probably call him a paedo. I really don`t think it`s anything to wind ourselves up about.
You can mention the Gibbs tackle that went through SuperKev but all the tackles in the game have been overshadowed by the main one. I have to say though, it is very nice of Mr Vinegar to call us a very good team. Maybe St Owen could publish a picture of the text.
But hang on, you say. What`s this? AOB is replacing Cahill? The manager confirmed as much in the press conference.
“Andy O`Brien will come in. He had a terrific pre-season and was outstanding against Osasuna. If the truth be told then he was unfortunate to miss out on the opening game.”
Unfortunate due to the fact that he had two better central defenders in front of him. I`m not knocking AOB, he certainly has the credentials to stand in and is probably the best fit. I would have preferred Sam Ricketts, but this is based solely on the fact that he played well with Sir Knight when Cahill was near death last season. I wouldn`t really depend on AOB based on his pre season performance against a team that was four weeks behind us in training. However, a good performance against Villa, keep him in the team to play North Dingleshire and there is a possibility, however small, that he will be prepared for Stretford. That will be the biggest test anyway, so two games against a couple of teams that should hold no fears, regardless of it being Kevin MacDonald`s last game in charge, will do him no harm.
There are some Villa fans who believe, erroneously, that this being MacDonald’s last game in charge will make their team play better than they have been. Players play with tactics and skill, not the heart. Allright, maybe a little bit of heart, but not enough to give it all for a man who may or may not have been given short shrift by the board. Bolton players all liked Sammy Lee, didn`t stop them playing rubbish for him.
In the same press conference, St Owen also revealed that SuperKev may miss the Villa game due to that bully Koscielny head butting him, causing him to suffer concussion. I feel that this kind of late tackle SHOULD be looked into by the FA as it will prove, when they look at the tape, that Koscielny hung in the air waiting for SuperKev to come along, after which he purposefully tried to knock our captain out. Then he feigned injury. It is THIS kind of challenge that the FA should really look into, not some airy fairy leg breaker.
Should the captain miss the game, this gives the manager the opportunity to see whether a TMS/Kidneys partnership would work. Kidneys is a more natural goalscorer than SuperKev and would give Villa`s shaky defence something else to think about. The manager certainly seems to want to show the football world that we can play football and would be remiss to just play TMS up front by himself as, even though he has equalled his goalscoring tally from last season, he is not the front line striker that Kidneys is. However, as we all know though, SuperKev is rock hard and won`t let a little thing like a depressed fracture of the skull stop him playing.
Of those players that are not suspended, Daviswithoutane, JOB, Jlloyd and Ricky haven`t trained this week, suggesting Robinson will play, whilst Tamir Cohen will be celebrating Yom Kippur, which is not exactly the worst thing I`ve heard all week. The worst thing I`ve heard all week is that Gail Porter has been for her first bikini wax in six years. Beat that.
Of the game itself, the manager has warned against this mystical cloud that will descend on the Villa players on Saturday just because MacDonald is going back to the reserves Well, the headline on the rubbish website says that he has done that, but the article is just the usual way that our manager talks about everybody else in football in which everyone everywhere is brilliant.
Can there really be a nicer man?
Well, hopefully the guy who rents us a house at a knockdown price near a beach, a pub and a motorway. But that’s for next time.
Until tomorrow, enjoy your Friday.